Starting Friday, November 25, you and your little ones can leave Lower Alabama on a magical train ride to see Santa at the North Pole.
The mile-long ride begins at Wales West on America’s only steam-powered, Welsh narrow-gauge railway. The train, Dame Ann, has been transformed into the Arctic Express to help fulfill Santa’s wish to visit with as many children as possible. Families ride past decorated Victorian-style buildings, gardens, woodlands and Lake Victoria, marveling at the million-plus lights that sparkle along the way.
Meeting, visiting and taking pictures with Santa (don’t forget your camera!) is only part of the North Pole experience. Santa’s elves will be busy handing out collectible wooden toy locomotives that can be taken home as is or decorated at the arts and crafts table. The kids may wish to make Christmas cards or an ornament, too, while they are there.
Once the train arrives back in Lower Alabama, everyone gets hot cocoa, a cookie and a candy cane to enjoy—plus on the weekends other special activities will be presented. But that’s not the end of the evening! Jump on a miniature train for a free ride past festive decorations, let the kids go shopping at the Elf Emporium, work off some steam at the playground, and take advantage of even more photo opps at the locomotive wall. Light lunch, dinner and snack foods are served at the café, and many train-related gifts—including Thomas the Tank Engine items—may be purchased at the gift shop.
North Pole transportation is available Fridays 4–9 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays 1–9 p.m., and as of December 14, a nightly schedule of 4–9 p.m. is added. It’s a tremendous amount of fun for just $12 per person (no charge for ages 13 months and younger). You’ll find Wales West on County Road 9 in Silverhill—take Highway 59 north to County Road 32 west, then turn north onto County Road 9; the railway is two miles ahead.
Make it an extra-special excursion by bringing your family to the beach for a long weekend! You may find the perfect place for your small family to be a 3-bedroom condo in Fort Morgan. Your larger family will be thrilled with a roomy 4-bedroom house or condo in Orange Beach. For true bonding time, you and your extended family can enjoy staying under one roof with a 6-bedroom house in Gulf Shores.
Stay informed of Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Vacation Rentals on Facebook and Twitter.